On my exploration of wood joinery I stumbled across a simply constructed Japanese style bed. I believe tatami refers to the mats that a traditional tatami bed utilizes. I would be using a western style queen size mattress so I decided to design my own using the elements of a traditional Japanese tatami bed.
I also wanted to take this opportunity to start learning Sketchup. Sketchup is a 3D design software that has a much more simple tool set than something like AutoCAD which makes it great for woodworking. To me, it’s almost like playing with 3D lego.
The bed is constructed out of 2×6 nominal construction lumber. It is finished with Boiled Linseed Oil.
This is the chest I built to house all my hand tools. It was designed by Michael Pekovich over at Fine Woodworking. I decided to get plans for my tool chest because I had never made anything like this before. This way I wouldn’t run into any road blocks due to a design error and could just focus on practicing my joinery.
I tried to leave all the “mistakes” to show my progression and give it a little of my character. The hand tools that live in this chest are the ones I used to build it. I’m sure it will gain some more tools along the way. This project was done in my spare time, learning as I went. It took approximately 2.5 months from start to finish.
The hinges and chest handles are Stanley brand. Drawer pulls are made using steel rings and cotter pins. The lid support rope is hand woven hemp with carved maple brackets securing it at both ends. The chest is made out of pine and finished with boiled linseed oil.
I didn’t know this is actually a popular challenge. This came about for me because I am learning how to use traditional hand tool methods and want to pratice my joinery. Looking around at what materials I have available my wife said “hey, there is a 2×4. What can you do with that?” So here we are; seeing what I can build from a single 8 foot 2×4″.
I am planning on incorporating a few methods I want to practice: mortise and tenon, hand planing, and ripping stock to thickness.
I start by crosscutting all the pieces I need. Two 16″ pieces for the top, two 16″ pieces for the legs, one 10″ and one 12″ piece for the aprons. Now I’m ready to start ripping to thickness.
First I ripped two of the 16″ pieces lengthwise to give me four 1¼” square legs after planing. I then moved on to ripping the 10″ piece in half to give me two ½ x 3¼ x 10″ pieces for the end aprons. After giving the piece for the top the same treatment I was ready for assembly. I don’t have any bar clamps so I need to improvise for clamping the table top.
It was a fun project and I learned a lot.